none

ELECTRIC FUTURE FOR THE AUSTRALIAN AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY

16-10-2017
by 
in 
Senator Lee Rhiannon

The Australian automotive industry is at a crossroad. One path continues on a trajectory of decline, with skills and jobs losses, the other path forges a new path of stability, workers’ rights and innovation.

Climate change is impacting on the automotive industry, with a necessary shift away from fossil-fuel-reliant vehicles towards electric vehicles, and greater access to public and active transport. Due to this, we have before us an opportunity to pivot into a reimagined industry where, instead of allowing massive skills and jobs losses, we could begin to manufacture electric vehicles.

Our automotive manufacturing industry is one of the most skilled in the world. Electric vehicles are forecast to make up over a third of new vehicle sales by 2040. Instead of importing these vehicles, which would mean the loss of our skilled workforce and their jobs, we could retrain workers in the automotive industry to produce electric vehicles right here in Australia. Electric vehicles are a huge part of the future of the global automotive industry, and the Greens are committed to ensuring that Australian automotive manufacturing workers aren’t left out.

Producing electric vehicles isn’t the only opportunity for reimagining the future of the automotive industry we have before us. We have the ability to avoid another situation where multinational corporations leave our workers in the lurch, by creating worker-controlled manufacturing factories for electric vehicles.

The Earthworker cooperative is an excellent initiative that has established Australia’s first worker-owned factory, making renewable energy appliances and components. By using Earthworker’s model of worker-owned and controlled factories, Australian automotive manufacturing workers could create sustainable, secure jobs that are good for our communities and our planet.

The opportunities for a sustainable and worker-focused automotive industry are endless. We could use Australian steel for electric vehicles, supporting our struggling steel industry; we could work with local councils to create community-owned electric car fleets; we could work with community-run renewable energy projects to power electric vehicles. There’s no end to what we can reimagine for this industry. The Greens are ready to build this world that is possible and essential.

Senator Lee Rhiannon is Greens industry spokesperson.

 

Related news & editorials

  1. 26.03.2019
    26.03.2019
    by      In
    The other day I came across a quote that has been attributed to Charles Darwin: “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, but rather, that which is most adaptable to change.”
    What a great quote to use in an article about the challenges facing the manufacturing industry, I thought. It... Read More
  2. 21.03.2019
    21.03.2019
    by      In
    We are on the verge of a federal election. The choice in this election will be absolutely clear, and nowhere more so than in industry policy.
    Labor is committed to stimulating investment in Australian manufacturing and Australian jobs.
    We have already announced key elements of our plan to support... Read More
  3. 04.02.2019
    04.02.2019
    by      In
    Over the last 40 years, Australian manufacturing has maintained its strength, resilience and adaptability through many challenges and transitions. Some may even say they’ve maintained that strength as a result of those challenges. These continue with fluctuations in the Australian dollar, the... Read More
  4. 31.01.2019
    31.01.2019
    by      In
    Government has a unique purchasing power, because the choice a government makes when it awards a contract to a successful tenderer becomes a powerful driver of economic activity.
    Successful bidders need suppliers, and procurement contracts grow their businesses too, expanding Australia’s industrial... Read More